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An honest and informative account with well-organized, useful advice for the abused.

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A writer recounts the sexual and emotional abuse she suffered as a child in this debut memoir that offers encouragement and support to other victims.

Moreno grew up in Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin, a Milwaukee suburb. She describes her family life during her early childhood years: “We were close, we were happy, and it all seemed to be normal.” Still, the picture she paints is one of a seriously dysfunctional family controlled by a self-indulgent, domineering father. According to the author, when she was 7 years old, her father’s brother, who was then in his 20s, began sexually molesting her, introducing her to a game he called “horsey.” The abuse continued for two years until Moreno’s mother discovered what was happening. At this point, the author’s uncle and paternal grandparents had been living with her and her parents. He was forced to move out, causing serious fissures in the extended family. Moreno then worked with a psychotherapist and was moving forward. But, when she was in her early teens, her mother began working outside the home; her father, a serial philanderer, used this opportunity to force her to watch pornographic movies with him. She was afraid to tell anyone. Eventually, her father walked out on her and her mother, cleaning out their bank accounts, canceling Moreno’s credit card, and leaving behind a pile of unpaid bills, including two mortgages on the house. Some uneven prose and repetition undercut the strength of the narrative. But the author does a fine job of portraying herself as a strong survivor and role model, urging victims to take charge of their lives and, most especially, remove themselves from dangerous relationships. She writes: “You, as the victim, need to have the willingness and strength to make the necessary changes to survive.” She clearly details the steps that should be taken in order to make a safe escape, and she provides a helpful list of websites and agencies that can deliver assistance. There is also a section devoted to people she calls “bystanders,” those who may be able to supply aid.  

An honest and informative account with well-organized, useful advice for the abused.

Pub Date: April 29, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-982226-62-6

Page Count: 108

Publisher: BalboaPress

Review Posted Online: Jan. 29, 2020

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This is not the Nutcracker sweet, as passed on by Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa. No, this is the original Hoffmann tale of 1816, in which the froth of Christmas revelry occasionally parts to let the dark underside of childhood fantasies and fears peek through. The boundaries between dream and reality fade, just as Godfather Drosselmeier, the Nutcracker's creator, is seen as alternately sinister and jolly. And Italian artist Roberto Innocenti gives an errily realistic air to Marie's dreams, in richly detailed illustrations touched by a mysterious light. A beautiful version of this classic tale, which will captivate adults and children alike. (Nutcracker; $35.00; Oct. 28, 1996; 136 pp.; 0-15-100227-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 28, 1996

ISBN: 0-15-100227-4

Page Count: 136

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1996

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An extravaganza in Bemelmans' inimitable vein, but written almost dead pan, with sly, amusing, sometimes biting undertones, breaking through. For Bemelmans was "the man who came to cocktails". And his hostess was Lady Mendl (Elsie de Wolfe), arbiter of American decorating taste over a generation. Lady Mendl was an incredible person,- self-made in proper American tradition on the one hand, for she had been haunted by the poverty of her childhood, and the years of struggle up from its ugliness,- until she became synonymous with the exotic, exquisite, worshipper at beauty's whrine. Bemelmans draws a portrait in extremes, through apt descriptions, through hilarious anecdote, through surprisingly sympathetic and understanding bits of appreciation. The scene shifts from Hollywood to the home she loved the best in Versailles. One meets in passing a vast roster of famous figures of the international and artistic set. And always one feels Bemelmans, slightly offstage, observing, recording, commenting, illustrated.

Pub Date: Feb. 23, 1955

ISBN: 0670717797

Page Count: -

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Oct. 25, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1955

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